The 15,000-acre Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore was re-designated by President Donald Trump as America’s 61st National Park. This is the first national park in Indiana, which has 15 miles of beach along the shores of Lake Michigan.
Sand, shore, and the space to breathe! This isn’t your run of the mill State Park OR National Park, it’s a place shaped by thousands of years of shifting landscapes and Hoosier history. Since 1925, Indiana Dunes State & National Parks have been wowing visitors with its natural terrain, three-miles of dune-lined shores, and a diverse range of flora and fauna. Splash around in Lake Michigan, bound up towering sand dunes, or explore beautiful trails on foot or on your bike. Escape the mundane on these storied shores.
Lake Michigan is the 5th largest lake in the world, and one of the deepest. Previously the Indiana Dunes Lakeshore was one of 418 “national park units.” Now it is part of an elite group of 61 parks across the country that Americans visit.
The Northwest Indiana Region is home to miles and miles of sandy beaches along Lake Michigan. There are 14 different beaches from Whiting to Michigan City. Below is a description for your enjoyment. If you go, remember to use sunscreen and have flip flops the sand is very hot. For A Complete List of Lake Michigan Beaches, click here.
Over 350 bird species have been spotted in the greater Indiana Dunes area, with most of them detected at Indiana Dunes National Park. The top birding locations at the park include Beverly Shores, Heron Rookery, Cowles Bog, and West Beach. The swamp habitat of Cowles Bog produces a large number of migrant birds in both the spring and fall.
There are 14 Hiking trail systems comprising over 50 miles of hiking in the Indiana Dunes National Park. Of those, one of the most popular is the West Beach Trail, a moderate to difficult hike that leads to the top of a high dune. Follow the loop through dunes, wetlands, woods, prairies, and ponds. When you get to the top of the 250 steps, you’ll be rewarded with what some say is the most spectacular view of the dunes. Marquette Trail Is Expected to have huge improvements by 2023.
The legislation signed by the president also renames the 1.6-mile Miller Woods trail in the new National Park as the Paul H. Douglas Trail. This trail is named in honor of Illinois U.S. senator who helped establish the National Lakeshore in 1966.
Tourism officials expect the national park designation will help draw even more visitors to Northwest Indiana. Patrons enjoy the hiking trails, biking trails, woodlands, prairies, savannas, bogs, wetlands and, of course, the Indiana sand dunes, which reach heights up to 192 feet.
PICNIC AREAS: There are 14 differently located picnic areas, and seven of them are sheltered with 2 reservable. To Reservse, click here.
BATHHOUSE / PAVILION: West Beach Bathhouse and Portage Lakefront have bathhouses. West Beach has restrooms, portable water, indoor showers, and lockers. Portage Lakefront has restrooms, seasonal snack bar and a classroom – meeting space.
CONCESSIONS: Find Concessions in two locations, West Beach and Portage Lakefront Riverwalk.
BEACH PARKING: There are approximately 1,200 Spaces Spread over 8 beaches.
CULTURAL SITES: Diana of the Dunes (West Beach); Century of Progress Homes (Dunbar Beach or Kemil Beach or Lakeview Beach at Beverly Shores); Bailly Homestead and Chellberg Farm (Porter); Sacred Sands Audio Tour (Portage) Paul H. Douglas Center (Miller Beach)
Find Out More About Northwest Indiana’s nature with biodiverse beaches, woods, prairies, and marshes offering hiking, biking, birding, Parks and Recreation, Gardening and Landscaping and Lake Michigan.
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As an Indiana Master Naturalist, scientist, inventor, historian, and photographer local resident Ron Seman has hiked the Indiana Dunes for over fifty (50) years. He leads FREE adventures everyday of the year in all weather with individuals, veterans, active military, first responders, those in recovery via school groups, organizations, Artistic Recovery and corporations for team building and he is always on the lookout for standout nature. Continue Reading . . .
Discover More About the Indiana Dunes:
• Annual Birding Festival 2021
Chesterton European Market
Century of Progress Tour
Things to Do in Michigan City
Dunes Learning Center
Chesterton Art Center
Things To Do in Chesterton
Hunter’s Brewing – Chesterton
Indiana Dunes Becomes a National Park
Songbird Prairie Bed & Breakfast awarded “Best Romantic Getaway”
Chautauqua in the Dunes
Lake Michigan Beaches
Free Beach Shuttles at Indiana Dunes
Birding Festival (May)
Maple Sugar Time (Spring)
Visit Mount Baldy
Outdoor Adventure Festival (Fall)
Apples Festival (Fall)
Local Family Fun Amusement Parks
Things to do in Valparaiso
Things to do in Portage
Find THINGS TO DO AT THE INDIANA DUNES LAKESHORE CLICK HERE!
Read More Articles about the Indiana Dunes CLICK HERE!